Vipassana practice, the Dark Night & Psoriasis

Philipp O, modified 1 Year ago at 3/10/23 11:56 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/10/23 11:56 AM

Vipassana practice, the Dark Night & Psoriasis

Post: 1 Join Date: 3/10/23 Recent Posts
Hi everyone,

I wasn't sure where to post this so I chose the Dark Night forum.

I went to my first Goenka retreat in november and I was really blown away by vipassana in general.
On day 5 or 6, I experienced something that I'm now pretty sure was an A&P event. My body was full of sparkling light, and a wave of light and pure bliss vibrated through my body. That was a truly wonderful experience.

The next day though was not as nice anymore, to put things mildly. Unfortuately, I'm dealing with a chronic skin disease called Psoriasis that usually doesn't bother me too much. But this day, my skin literally EXPLODED. All my body was covered in this very itchy rash, shedding itself. 

It was really hard to keep on practicing since the Goenka technique focuses on scanning the surface of your body, which was itching like hell. I asked the assistant teacher about it and he just said "jUsT kEeP wAtChInG iT" which was the absolute opposite of helpful. I was really mad about being left on my own in such a situation.

Back home, my dermatologist sent me to the university hospital, where I got well-working treatment that made it disappear. Right now I'm changing medications, and the disease took this opportunity to come back full blown emoticon

My question: I'm sincerely worried if this is normal to a certain degree, or if I'm doing something seriously wrong her. Are here any physicians who know a bit or two about stuff like this? (my doctors have no clue about meditation)

I'm sure this disease has a huge psychosomatic quality, which only makes sense to show up when entering Dark Night territory. I often feel raging, surpressed anger when sitting and being aware of the psoriasis. Currently tho, I'm feeling more and more equanimity towards it, which is good. But if anyone here got me any helpful tips on how to deal with such a situation, I'd be very grateful.

Also, if there are any teachers or advanced practitioners in Berlin, I'd be greatful to be in contact.

Thank you for reading! emoticon
Aeon , modified 1 Year ago at 3/10/23 4:57 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/10/23 4:57 PM

RE: Vipassana practice, the Dark Night & Psoriasis

Posts: 212 Join Date: 1/31/23 Recent Posts
Generally stress can exacerbate skin conditions like psoriasis. Most doctors will know of cases where stress have people to break out in hives.

My mom has hibernating psoriasis, and can keep it at bay with  topical progesterone. I would recommend progest-E, but others can work too if they have natural vitamin E in them. Applying that is the best first aid for it I know.

You might like to read books like "When the body says no" and "The body keeps the score" if you want to delve deeper into the relationship between stress/suffering and disease.

Not a doctor, not giving medical advice.
Adi Vader, modified 1 Year ago at 3/14/23 10:09 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/14/23 10:09 AM

RE: Vipassana practice, the Dark Night & Psoriasis

Posts: 329 Join Date: 6/29/20 Recent Posts
Meditation practice takes us into states where we experience existential terror and angst. This experience has associated with it some amounts of adrenaline and cortisol that is continuously released into the body. This upsets the immune system. For some people immunity decreases, for others the immune system goes haywire and starts attacking cells within the body. Lichen Planus, Psoriasis, Arthritis are possible outcomes of an immune system gone mad.

Determine very strongly that for a defined period of time - maybe 2 weeks/1 month you are no longer interested in vipashyana. Determine that you will use this period to generate and immerse yourself in tranquility. For this period, in line with your schedule and the time it permits, generate oceans of tranquility and simply let the body mind system soak in it.

You can use this post to take inspiration: